Read the darkest story ever told about the man that inspired the myth of Dracula.
Listen to the Prologue
The Book of Vlad
I was born a common man, in the common woods, in a common land. For the mere mention of anything grand, anything rich, besides common would be an insult to reality. It was in these harsh times that I bore my first name, a name given by my mother and father, of which I had only one. It was my father’s hand that passed it down to me upon the death of my mother, upon her demise. It was the name that I knew too well, a name that I lived and felt, the name of, Bastard.
I was only known as this since I was a killer at birth. I had taken the life of my mother for the selfish reason of living my own and in so lost my father also. As I came out of her womb, she had become lifeless. Her strength being given away in return for mine. Even before I learnt to breathe, I had become a murderer, heartless and cold, screaming of my glory as my father wept for losing his. I had come to this earth without their blessing and, in fact, was instead, a curse that took everything he had away in nine months of torture, of concern and worry, and in an instant his hope and dreams.
In the eyes of my father, I was that dire of being that deserved not the right to live. Yet, he had no desire to kill me right then and there, for he knew that I was the last gift left by my mother. The last connection he had to her heart. And it was this heart that made his burn, that made his anger grow, and made his hate rage.
I must say, it was a mistake to let me live beyond that first turmoil, that first step into the light of this world. It was a mistake to have plagued those all that have come before me, and those that have died after me. It was the beginning, a beginning of dark times, and a beginning of my dark journey as I first took a step in the light of my own but we will come to that later.
As a child, I had not known much but that to be the receiver of bare dried fruit, of ravished nature and deserted plains, I was the end to the element of life, the last morsel of tainted essence. I was the soot. I was the dirt. And being so, I was discarded like most unwanted things, the most undesired, the most undeserved things in life. No more significant than as rotten cabbage or soiled festered meat. I was more those things than I had been a son or even a human being, of both of which I was none.
I was to be no more his offspring, than that of slave of which would have garnered more respect than that of I, no more his child than that of the pests and nuisances that plagued the farms every day. I was to be the unwanted, unloved, the unneeded, and a blight to the land and it was what my father had come to accept.
For my father would have traded a thousand, I's for only one single short glimpse of my mother. But it was a trade that he could not make, a proposition that he could not undertake, and he knew it well. The diviner of life had denied him that and the pleasure and love he had once felt to raise forth a child of respectable nature was replaced with a villainous monster that was to be his burden of a son.
And a monster I was, for I had been the scissor to cut the thread of his perfect life, his perfect wife, his perfect existence. A monster I was because I only knew evil to live, only knew self-interests, and self wants to survive. The flaw that I am was to be treated as such, and would be denounced like all such things vital to vitality. Hope. Love. Compassion. All things lost.
It was wonder why my father did not abandon me. I would have thought it as easy as that. That he could clearly take me some place far away and let me go, set me on a cart and let me ride lost in the unknown, or barter me off to a man and live life in servitude but all those things would have caused interaction and the recognition that I was his son. So for those reasons I was not to abandoned. Yet, now, when I look back at it, I realize that maybe he already had in his own way, but I was too young and of little mind to have realized it.
We slept in the same hut, even times bathed in the same streams. I followed him, from a distance, as he performed his daily tasks. I followed him, again from a distance, as he performed his daily rituals. From foraging to working the fields, I followed in the darkness, the shadows watching, learning from what I witnessed, and so teaching me how to survive and thrive, but all this I did, always at a distance.
It was if he knew of my existence but he showed no sign of it. Not a single word he had spoken to me, not a single glimpse did he send in my direction, only silence, only remorse, and only hate. Yet, I did exist to him, for I could sense in his spirit, the haunting plague of desecration, destruction, and devastation I brought to his pristine life. I saw myself in his misery, in his hate, and loathing feelings through the woeful distaste of life. His grim expression and his downturned face was the symbol of my presence for without that I would not have believed that I was an actuality.
I would have indeed thought myself as a ghost, a specter, an apparition that crawled the lands but out of others in the village, I saw my confirmation of existence. And on those rare and very few occasions, when asked by those ‘others’ who saw and pointed in my direction, I knew that I was real and not a phantom. Yet there was only a response of disgust from my father, if there was a response at all, which made me further question my convictions of reality.
But I was determined to change the fact, to be noticed, to be confirmed. I had made all efforts to harbor attention but each time I failed. I had cried. I had screamed. I had broken what little we had. I had even stolen from others in order to be caught, all in the vain hope of acknowledgment from my father, but in all that, I failed.
For no reaction came, no difference of opinion good or worse I had felt. It was that emptiness that was most haunting, it was the void and abyss like emotion I felt. I was not lectured for the evil I had done. I was not scolded for the filth that I am. I was not even punished by the stinging of the flesh, for even that would have been something, something to show I was a son, a human being.
No, I did not even receive the decency of pain. Instead, I was left alone, ignored out of sight, invisible and forgotten to the eyes of my father. I was a mere fairy tale, a haunting nightmare that plagued his thoughts. I was an illusion of a child, no more, no less.
The bitterness in my heart, the bitterness in my soul grew. It was born as a foggy shade until it went dark grey, and with time, it had become black until all had become a nightmarish abyssal haze. O that darkness bellowed in my stomach and churned in my heart. It twisted in my eyes, and stung my soul if I soul I did have. If I was not born a monster, I had become a monster. A monster only brought forth to cause misery which I did every day from my ongoing sin of mere existence.
I believe it my right to say that I was born motherless. Although, my mother had no remorse of my birth for I did not give her the possibility to see what my father saw. I had not given her a chance to hate for I was cruel enough to even take that away. And for sure, I can truly say that I was fatherless, for what would make a father to a child if the father was one that never saw his child? No, I can truly say that I was an entity brought on to this world by that of divine light or putrid darkness, but nurtured by none, only raised by the harshness of neglect and disdain, and harbored by all the wretchedness of humanity. No mother, no father. I was to be left alone, left to see the world with childlike eyes, for what the world truly was and truly is, pain.
Yes, pain is what truly existed as the basis of my world. O and how magnificent and mysterious was pain. If the world was broken up and examined at its bitter core, in its smallest dissection, then they would only find one answer, and that would be pain.
Pain was truly the only thing that stretched to every fiber of the world for it was everywhere for it made its presence in the oddest of places. Striking in the pits of the stomach when I was hungry, to the back of the mind when no sense was to be made, and even when I suffered a gash or a wound, pain was there, always there. But pain truly had a home, where it always returned to no matter where else it resided for the brief moments, and the place I felt it most and at its most severe, was in my heart. Pain was my first companion as a child and the only one to never abandon me, for I would feel it infinite times and in infinite abundances and it would guide me through life as I grew.
And I grew very quickly in those times. Left alone by all and shunned by everything else. It was those times I thought I was at my weakest, at my worst, but looking back those were the good times, those were the times that I missed most. When life was simple of those of immaturity with simple answers and simple thoughts. Sadness filled one's mind and cleared all else. How easy life was if it was only that way, but life has a way of surprising you, of taking you to places you do not expect. I would have thought anything better to be than where I was at, but I did not realize one important thing, one important fact that life knows all too well and does its best to teach you. The fact that you cannot fall if you have already fallen, that you cannot go any lower than when you are at the bottom. Life knew what it had to do, and it was simple to take me higher, to let me soar higher than those of mountains, those of clouds, and even those of gods. Then life would know what to do next, what it always does, it takes you to the very top, and pushes you off the edge.